Mike Short

"Up All Night"

4th August 2004
reviewer: Mike Short
rating: 3 out of 5
published by: Vertigo
released: 28th June 2004
  1. Leave Me Alone
  2. Rock 'n' Roll Lies
  3. Vice
  4. Up All Night
  5. Which Way Is Out
  6. Rip It Up
  7. (Don't Go Back To) Dalston
  8. Golden Touch
  9. Stumble And Fall
  10. Get It And Go
  11. In The City
  12. To The Sea
  13. Fall, Fall, Fall

Razorlight are currently being touted by the music press as “the next big thing”; a claim too often bandied about in an effort to sell music papers, when to be honest, there’s not too much to write about (Andrew WK? Stand up NME). Sometimes however, great bands can arrive out of this hype; notably The Strokes, and perhaps The Libertines fit the bill, and given the self-hyping frontman of Razorlight, Johnny Borrell, you could be very easily drawn into believing this band are a worthy owner of the “Best New Band” crown.

Are they? Well, yes and no. Whilst no doubt there are some fantastic, melodic, pop songs here (“Golden Touch”, “Vice” and “Up All Night” all in particular stand out), there’s nothing that hasn’t been done before. "Golden Touch", the first single off the record for instance, sounds like an unreleased Ocean Colour Scene track.

However, no one said Razorlight were the most original band, merely that they write great songs. And it must be said that on many of these tracks there is a superb immediacy which has been lacking in many rock bands lately. Many tracks are memorable after the first listen. The music is also deceivingly intricate and has been obviously cared for by Borrell. Some genius twists occur in places (such as the climax of the title track).

So, rock's new golden boys? Perhaps. They write decent tunes; in fact, some of the best you’ll hear this year. However, if they want to be achieve the greatness Borrell so obviously desires, they may want to push things a bit further next time.